Chemical interaction at the buried silicon/zinc oxide thin-film solar cell interface as revealed by hard X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy

Maximilian Hannes Wimmer, Daniel Gerlach, R. G. Wilks, S. Scherf, Roberto Félix, C. Lupulescu, Florian Ruske, G. Schondelmaier, K. Lips, J. Hüpkes, M. Gorgoi, Wolfgang Eberhardt, B. Rech, Marcus Bär

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Hard X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (HAXPES) is used to identify chemical interactions (such as elemental redistribution) at the buried silicon/aluminum-doped zinc oxide thin-film solar cell interface. Expanding our study of the interfacial oxidation of silicon upon its solid-phase crystallization (SPC), in which we found zinc oxide to be the source of oxygen, in this investigation we address chemical interaction processes involving zinc and aluminum. In particular, we observe an increase of zinc- and aluminum-related HAXPES signals after SPC of the deposited amorphous silicon thin films. Quantitative analysis suggests an elemental redistribution in the proximity of the silicon/aluminum-doped zinc oxide interface - more pronounced for aluminum than for zinc - as explanation. Based on these insights the complex chemical interface structure is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)309-313
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Electron Spectroscopy and Related Phenomena
Issue numberPART B
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Elemental redistribution
  • Silicon thin-film solar cell
  • Silicon/zinc oxide interface
  • Zinc oxide

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